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Minikin's Journal

Routine Ramblings of an Occasionally Interesting Housewife

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It's not my fault, damn it!

I hate credit card companies. I hate them, Sam I Am.

So there's this nifty new practice, buried in most new credit card agreements, of allowing for changing an interest rate to the "default rate" based on your credit reporting history on other credit accounts.

I started up an account with AT&T Universal, in order to take advantage of a low interest balance transfer offer. I set it up for automatic payments. I monitored the statements so that the automatic payments would always cover at least the minimum on the account. I managed this account perfectly, with no screwups. Really.

Last Tuesday, there was $168 avail on this card. I know for sure it's the card I used for a paypal payment on Sunday night. I don't remember off the top of my head if I used it for anything else this week.

Last WEDNESDAY, they did end-of-month accounting. They RAISED MY INTEREST RATE, based on an Equifax report (probably a bad report by Optima, which has NO provisions for automatic payments). The new interest rate generated a finance charge that put my account .52 over limit. The finance charge was more than three times the charge for the previous month.

Flar is going to write a letter of protest for me. He's better at writing these things. The micro-history of Just This Account is stellar, but the rest of our finances are totally in the crapper, when it comes to late payments, etc., so I have very little hope they will do anything.

It's possible we can arrange to cancel the card, with the old interest rate intact for paying off the debt. But I'm not holding my breath.

What I'd like to see is for Flar's business deals to come through with gobs of cash so we can pay off all these stupid cards and go back to a "current" standing on everything.

I was so discouraged and angry I was crying. Complaining about it in my journal helped to calm me down. Writing is good for me.

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Writing can be quite cathartic.

Bum luck on that account. *Hug*

That does seem unfair of them to change the rate without at least notifying you about it. :(


Ugh. I think that clause of "or credit rating on other accounts" was put in there so they could have a reason to stick anyone with higher interest rates on a whim. I mean, you could have an old student loan you forgot about or something that could show up, but otherwise have perfect credit, and they can nail you because of that. Stupid credit card companies. I hope Flar's letter gets you a refund of the fee and your old interest rate back.

We'll see. Notice of the change was on the same statement that made use of the new rate, so I *might* get one month grace on it.

FWIW, it's not just "bad credit" - it's missed payments. And I've got that, to another credit card, so it's a "fair cop" as the Python boys would put it.

I wonder about whether I was given fair notice, however.

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